OLR Bill Analysis

SB 31

AN ACT CONCERNING CONTINUED DELIVERY OF LEGAL SERVICES TO THE POOR.

SUMMARY:

This bill makes permanent certain court filing fee increases and fees that took effect July 1, 2012 and are currently set to expire on July 1, 2015.

It also raises, from 70% to 95%, the portion of revenue received from these fee increases that the chief court administrator must transfer to the organization administering the interest on lawyers' trust accounts (IOLTA) program to fund legal services for the poor. Accordingly, it decreases, from 30% to 5%, the portion of the increase that the administrator must transfer to the Judicial Data Processing Revolving Fund for the judicial branch's informational data processing system.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2014, for the changes in the allocation of the fee increases; October 1, 2014 for the extension of those increases.

EXTENSION OF INCREASED COURT FEES

PA 12-89 increased certain existing fees, and imposed new fees, for filing various court actions and motions in Superior Court. Under that act, the fee increases and new fees are scheduled to sunset on July 1, 2015. The bill makes the increases and fees permanent.

Table 1 shows the current fees and the scheduled reduction under current law.

Table 1: Fee Increases and Fees Extended by the Bill

PA 12-89

Action or Motion

Current Fee (and Continuing Fee Under Bill)

Reduced Fee Under Current Law As of July 1, 2015

2, 9

Filing civil case generally (there are different fees for certain types of cases)

$350

$300

2, 9

Filing case in which the sole claim for relief is damages and the amount, legal interest, or property in demand is less than $2,500

225

175

2, 9

Filing small claims case*

90

75

2, 9

Filing counterclaim in small claims case

90

0

2, 9

Motion for admittance as attorney pro hac vice

600

0

2, 9

Filing counterclaim, cross complaint, apportionment complaint, or third party complaint

200

0

3, 10

Motion to modify judgment in a family relations matter

175

125

4-7, 11-14

Application from judgment creditor for enforcement of an unsatisfied judgment, including debts due from financial institutions or other sources, and wage executions against a judgment debtor who fails to comply with an installment payment order

100

75

* By raising the small claims filing fee, PA 12-89 also increased certain fees that are set by law in an amount equal to that fee (e.g., appeals of penalties for certain municipal matters (see CGS 7-152b, 7-152c, and 47a-6b)).

COMMITTEE ACTION

Judiciary Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

34

Nay

0

(03/24/2014)